5 Mobile Marketing Tactics For Getting People Into Retail Stores

by - April 28, 2016

With the rise of ecommerce and with online shopping being easier and less time consuming than physically going out to shop, it's getting increasingly arduous for brick and mortar stores to get the kind of business they were getting 10 years ago.

Fortunately, mobile marketing has become the new normal and thankfully is affordable enough for smaller businesses to get into. Mobile marketing is special because mobile users are likely to actually be outside and close to your physical store. So it's not surprising then that mobile marketing - used correctly - can be a powerful tool for getting people into your store.

Here are 5 mobile marketing strategies to help you to do exactly that:

1: Give people a good reason to go to your store

Customers are hesitant creatures by nature and most need a bit of a push to buy something that they don't necessarily need. Considering this, you need to give your potential customers a solid reason to visit your store rather than the one down the road. This should be the driving philosophy behind all of your mobile marketing activities:

Here are a few ways you might be able to do this:

  • Discounts - 93% of shoppers use some form of discount code throughout the year, and mobile marketing is an excellent way to distribute timely offers. Send customers regular discounts and if they happen to be near to you they might just pop in!
  • Harness your online customers - This may seem obvious, but if you have an online store, or a following, you should let those people know that you also have a physical store. Alert them to new stock offers or even any competitions you may be running. Repeat customers are the most profitable customers, so keep them close!
  • Participate in events - Having a hand in organizing local events, sponsoring local not-for-profit organizations or anything that involves the local press can give your business a hefty dose of publicity.

2: Focus on customer experience rather than price

Customers are your lifeline; your business wouldn't survive without the regular custom they provide, so naturally they should be your #1 priority.

Too many companies focus on reducing price. There is a big stigma that consumers are overly price oriented and will shop elsewhere if offered a better deal. In some niches this may be true, but in most it is not. Do you always buy the cheapest products available? Probably not.

Make sure that your mobile marketing is driven by a desire to improve your customer's experience rather than just reducing prices. With this mentality you will be better placed to come up with promotions and ideas that actually improve your customer's life.

Consumers want a happy shopping experience, free from frustration and complication. If you can offer this as standard, then you are pretty much all the way there. So instead of focusing your efforts on reducing prices, focus on how you can improve your customers' experiences. Remember, 55% of customers are happy to pay more for a product if their purchase experience exceeds their expectations.

3: Make good use of social media

Social media has to be the most potent marketing platform ever conceived - and for the most part, it's free! It is also a platform which lends itself fantastically well to mobile marketing, as most users access social media via their mobile devices.

As of 2014, over 74% of internet users are using social media, so it's safe to say, if you're not utilizing social media for marketing in 2016, you are doing it wrong.

Ideally every business needs to develop a Facebook page. However, it is important to discern which platform is most relevant for your business. For instance, Instagram may work better for clothing brands, whereas a computer retailer may choose twitter with the aim of becoming an influencer in their niche and building a large following.

Many large social media platforms are also starting to offer native marketing & advertising services. These can be a great way to reach new customers and increase engagement with your brand as you can tailor your ad campaign to your relevant target audience.

For instance, with Facebook Ads you can target people based on location AND interests. Meaning that if you have a local hair salon, you could target people who live with 10 miles of your premises and who have expressed an interest in fashion and beauty products.

Facebook is also a place where your customers are highly likely to talk about you. So be a part of the conversation and put a face to your brand!

4: Consider a local SEO strategy

This is technically not mobile marketing related, but if someone searches for your business and doesn't find you listed on Google, you don't actually exist... right?

If a mobile user searches for "hair salon" (to stick with our previous example), their search results are likely to be personlised based on their location, and if you don't get your "local SEO" ducks in a row, you may not show up!

Listing your store on Google My Business should be compulsory for every business owner and will get you listed in the search results and even on Google maps!

But it's not just Google that you should be getting listed on. Submitting your business information to various local directories will help potential customers find you & increase website traffic, which will overall increase foot traffic!

5: Introducing personalised offers

Approximately 44% of customers act on the offers they receive, whether it be visiting your website, searching for your company online or walking to your store to buy a product. Whichever they decide to do, one thing is for sure: Offering a discount gets people interested.

Now what if you were to take this one step further by offering each customer a discount based on their previous shopping habits? 75% of consumers report that they would prefer businesses to send them personalised offers over generic ones - so personlising your offers is a no brainer really...

But how can a local store make use of personlisation?

Well, loyalty schemes are one option, and with mobile technology it is easier than ever for small businesses to set up such a scheme.

One strategy would be to create a mobile app which acts as a loyalty card (using an on screen QR code to track purchases) and offers the user promotions. If you can incentivise customers to install your App you have access to marketing to them directly.

If they allow you to use their location you could even send them a discount code - directly to their phone - as they pass your store!

So imagine one of your customers walks by, and then they get a message on their phone which says something like this:

"Hey Sophie. You haven't been in for a while, if you want a quick trim we have a slot available right now! Use this code for an extra 10% off!"

Conclusion

With mobile marketing the possibilities really are endless, you are only limited by your imagination and your ability to understand what your customers need!

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About — I am the CEO and founder of mob.is.it. I usually write about the mobile web, online marketing and growth hacking while I enjoy helping fellow entrepreneurs and small businesses across the globe understand and profit with mobile marketing. You can reach me at silvio@mob.is.it or follow me on Twitter at @silvioporcellan

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